[Time to shake things up a bit.]

Bill has a fake woman.  He takes naps with her when I don’t feel like napping. She’s rather short for an adult woman, but tall enough for him to curl himself around her (she’s pliable that way) and hold her in his arms until he drifts off.

When I tease him about her, he says she’s not a fake woman, she’s a nice soft something to hug in bed.  Like me, only without arms, legs and other features.

I tell him this is not a compliment.  If a thick down object as long as a woman is like me, what does he need me for?

He says I’m good for lots of things the fake woman can’t do. He smiles and rolls his eyes when he says this. He thinks that makes him adorable (and the fake woman more acceptable).  However, he does wish it — he calls the fake woman “it” — had arms. Then he and the fake woman could switch off, and she could hold him sometimes.  Like I do.

I’m not really jealous.  Apparently he had her before he met me, and hid her in a closet after I came along.  What I object to, now that they’ve resumed their relationship in the late afternoons, is that she’s hard to roll up, secure with an elastic band, and stuff back into one of his closets when he’s (if you’ll excuse the expression) finished with her.  So he doesn’t. And then, when we come upstairs to go to sleep at night, there she is — still sprawled diagonally all over our bed (which used to be my bed), like the slut she is.

Not a slut, says Bill.  Only been with me.

She’s a slut, I say, because her services were for sale.

Then we both laugh and tie her up (apparently she doesn’t object to bondage), and stuff her back into the closet, where she belongs. Until the next time she is needed.

I do admit, though, that for all the manhandling she’s experienced, she’s very clean.  Nice white cotton, without a spot.

Also, I can’t get too cranky with Bill because I know there are many things that can be bought — legally or otherwise — as substitutes for whatever makes life more pleasurable but is temporarily, or permanently, unavailable. About these I have absolutely no personal experience and cannot be your guide. But I do keep my ears open and have therefore learned, in the course of a long life, that certain massage parlors offer gentlemen clients, for an additional fee, something euphemistically called a “hand release.”  Then — for the other sex —  there are “toy boys,” attractive (to some) but expensive.  There are also the purchases that, if discovered, get governors of states — like Eliot Spitzer — in major trouble. Compared to that, Bill’s fake woman in the closet is nothing!

Moreover, let she who once lived in a glass house throw the first stone. I have a confession to make.  (Thought I was squeaky clean, didn’t you?)   Between the end of my second marriage and the arrival of Bill in my life, I wandered through a wilderness of nearly thirteen man-free years, punctuated only by two unsuccessful recyclings of boyfriends from my youth, and a series of even more unsuccessful forays into the world of personals.

And then, in the early days of the internet, I came across a website that assured its customers of complete discretion and plain brown wrapping.  Here it is, the confession. [If you’re the one who’s squeaky clean, this is where you avert your eyes from the screen until you’ve found something more wholesome to read.]  Intrigued and needy, with fingers shaking on the keyboard and using initials only, late one night I purchased what was described online as an absolutely lifelike rubber replica of the appendage of a famous male porn star. His name now escapes me, as I had never seen any of the movies which brought him this peculiar sort of stardom.  I had therefore never seen the original of what I was buying.  Would that I had!  I would have saved $10.95 then and there. As it was, I knew it was a mistake the minute I’d done it.  But how do you click “unsend?”

My purchase arrived with remarkable promptitude, in plain brown wrapping as promised, with no return address. It was a Saturday. I was home in broad daylight, the shades were up, the light was good.  My brain was clear of midnight fantasies.

The massive bubble-gum pink object that awaited me in its box was huger than huge —  in both dimensions.  No wonder the owner of the original had risen so swiftly to porn notoriety.  Had there ever been a man so large, before or since?  Moreover, each bubble-gum pink vein was rendered in what I supposed was authentic detail. Had the star submitted to a plaster cast?  Was he able to rise to such an occasion?

And what was normal (if lonely) me supposed to do with this mammoth pink club?  Hit intruders over the head with it?  I thrust it from me and it fell heavily to the floor. Thump. Where could I hide it?  Quick — into the garbage, so no one should ever see!  Using the brown paper wrapping to shield my hand from contact with the veiny pink rubber, I hurried it into a black plastic bag with ties and dumped the knotted bag into my neighbor’s garbage can.  (Certainly not in mine.)  He was visiting nieces and nephews in Poland, and wouldn’t be back until after garbage pickup day.

Well, that’s all long behind me now. I have had a lot of baths since then and have cleansed myself of impurity.

As for Bill’s fake woman, he can take her out of the closet any time.

Even if he does insist on calling her a pillow.


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